7 Practical Ways to Overcome Our Universal Hindrances to Prayer

Prayer is one of the greatest, long-lasting gifts we can give to those we love.

The Bible also tells us that prayer is power. In Ephesians 6:10-18, for example, we see that it is through prayer that Satan’s schemes and powers toward our loved ones can be stopped.

Furthermore, prayer is the channel through which God is moved to shape the lives of others. When we pray for those we love, we unleash eternity-impacting power upon their lives.

We know these things. Yet, even in knowing, still we struggle to pray.

2 BIG Struggles


No matter our life circumstances, we are busy. And it is our busyness that often keeps us from prayer.

If TIME is your struggle, please allow me to offer these suggestions in overcoming. 

Ways to Overcome

  1. Make prayer a priority – Put prayer on your calendar; set an alarm. I know. When you hear this suggestion for the first time, you may cringe thinking it sounds a bit sacrilegious. But bear with me. Haven’t you found that the best way to make date night or family night happen is to schedule it? Try writing your times of prayer on your calendar or setting a reminder alarm on your phone.
  2. Examine your life – Spend a few days paying attention to how and where the hours of your life are being used. Then look for places where you can…
  3. Pray as you live – We can talk to our Heavenly Father anytime and anywhere. Consider praying as you stand in line at the grocery, do the laundry, enjoy your morning coffee, or walk the dog.
  4. Discover a way of praying that connects with your wiring – It is a fact that we tend to make time for the things we enjoy. Do you enjoy being outside basking in God’s creation? Then pray as you walk through the park. Are you a deep thinker? Try finding a quiet spot for meditative prayer.


The other BIG struggle many of us face is the one of not knowing “what” to pray. Perhaps it’s because our mind is on overload or we’re being bombarded with distractions. Some days, I know, I simply find it difficult to think. Whatever the reason, we fall victim to offering vague and general prayers on behalf of those for whom we pray.

Do either of these lines of prayer sound familiar?  “God, bless __________.”  OR “Help _______________ have a good day.”

Ways to Overcome

5. Pray specifically – Praying specifically is a biblical concept. Elijah, human as we are, prayed a very specific prayer. Pay attention – looking, listening for needs; then pray.

“Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.”

James 5:17-18

6. Ask – So simple, yet often overlooked. Gather prayer requests by asking. All it takes is a moment. Send a text. Make a call.

7. Pray Scripture – This is one of the best ways to overcome the struggle of knowing what to pray. You can’t go wrong when praying Scripture. It is both, biblical and specific. Of course, any Scripture can be prayed, but if you are just starting out on this journey, you might want to begin with any of Paul’s prayers or the Psalms.

Overcoming the struggles takes effort, intention, and commitment. In other words, WORK, but it is worthy work.

And it isn’t just overcoming the struggles that is work. As Oswald Chambers once said, Prayer is WORK.

“Prayer does not fit us for greater works; prayer is the greater work.”

Oswald Chambers

May your work of prayer bless the lives of those you love and bring honor and glory to our Great God.

Praying with Purpose

This book gives us a wonderful roadmap for enjoying and sharing a focused and creative prayer life. For those who often pray vague prayers, this book has many suggestions and resources compiled to encourage and inspire victorious praying. Praying with Purpose includes creative and real world methods for a variety of different types of prayer and prayer topics.

3 comments on “7 Practical Ways to Overcome Our Universal Hindrances to Prayer

  1. I love how you’ve broken this down and given such great tips for improving our prayer lives, Deborah! Pinning and tweeting this for sure!

    • Thank you for stopping by today. I appreciate your words of encouragement and sharing via Pinterest and Twitter. Thank you, again!!!!

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